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Botkyrka konsthall presents the Fittja Pavilion during the 14th Venice Architecture Biennale. Download the introduction to the Fittja Pavilion: Fittja Pavilion Venice

The Fittja Pavilion was listed by the Magazine Domus as one of the most interesting exhibitions during the Architecture Biennale in Venice. Read the article here.

What role can an art institution play in our times? What can it become? As a way of launching the New Biennial of Art and Architecture, Botkyrka konsthall presents the Fittja Pavilion in Venice.

Can the Million Programme (the plan to build one million housing units during the years 1965–75 in Sweden) with its modernist grand-scale planning, and its weakly defined public spaces, be reevaluated? Can it even bring about another kind of contemporary art?

On 13 September, Botkyrka konsthall inaugurates the New Biennial of Art and Architecture in Botkyrka. It is a way of researching how a new kind of art institution can grow from the specific qualities of northern Botkyrka, the modernist housing complexes that make up part
of the southern suburbs of the greater Stockholm area.

Botkyrka konsthall has been running the context-specific residency programme Residence Botkyrka in the neighbourhood of Fittja since 2009. The new institution grows from the knowledge produced by artists, architects, thinkers and curators from within the residency programme, in close collaboration with the community of Fittja, whose inhabitants come from 161 nations around the world, and a rich cultural life consisting of many cultural associations and religious centres. Botkyrka konsthall in Fittja is an arts institution that is open to future practices of contemporary art and architecture; it is an institution that grows organically, that operates internationally through the local context and that produces new knowledge rather than representing the already existing.

On 7 June, the Fittja Pavilion in Serra dei Giardini and in Cini-Venier Naval Institute opens in conjunction to the 14th International Architecture Biennale in Venice. The curator of the biennale, Rem Koolhaas, has called for a closer look on modernism (1914-2014) in the biennale exhibition entitled Fundamentals. In the Fittja Pavilion participating architects and artists reevaluate the architecture and city planning of the 1960s and 1970s in Sweden. In the exhibition the research from Fittja is presented in extensive artistic and architectural research projects, inspiring artists, architects and activists from Sweden, South Africa, Great Britain, the United States and Japan to work together. The Fittja Pavilion presents artistic productions and projects that have been preceded by an extensive time of context-specific research and collaborations in Fittja through Residence Botkyrka. A number of the works in the pavilion will become permanent public art works and public interventions in Fittja through the New Biennial for Art and Architecture in Botkyrka.

Many of the participants of the Fittja Pavilion have been inspired by the philosopher and farmer Masanobu Fukuoka in their thinking about how a new arts institution can be built through the element of chance and unexpected encounters.

“Human knowledge and effort expand and grow increasingly complex and wasteful without limit. We need to halt this expansion, to converge, simplify, and reduce our knowledge and effort. This is in keeping with the laws of nature. Natural farming is more than just a revolution in agricultural techniques. It is the practical foundation of a spiritual movement, of a revolution to change the way man lives.”
(p29, Fukuoka, Natural Farming, 1985)

One ancient technique that Fukuoka has revived is the ‘seed ball’ – a mixture of seeds encased in clay and dry compost. Fukuoka used these seed balls for dispersing rice seed on his farm, but he also suggested that they could be used for re-greening arid lands. In
the Fittja Pavilion several artists have been inspired by Fukuoka’s thinking. The seed balls thus become an image of the many possibilities that the future holds if we let go of our preconceived notions and linear thinking.

Joanna Sandell, curator

Artists and architects: Johanna Billing (Sweden), DK-CM (UK), Derek Gripper (South Africa) + Lindy Roy (South Africa/US), Mako Ishizuka (Japan), Junior Residence (Sweden), Kultivator (Sweden) + Stu Wright (South Africa), Tor Lindstrand + students from KTH School of Architecture (Sweden), Elena Mazzi (Italy), Lorenzo Nassimbeni (South Africa), OPENrestaurant (US) + Ayhan Aydin (Sweden), Jelena Rundqvist + Aron Kullander Östlind (Sweden), Pia Sandström (Sweden), Spridd (Sweden), James Webb (South Africa), Karl-Jonas Winqvist (Sweden)

The Fittja Pavilion is organised by Botkyrka konsthall in collaboration with Microclima project, Venice, the Nordic Pavilion through the Swedish Centre for Architecture and Design, KTH – School of Architecture, Serra dei Giardini, Cini-Venier Naval Institute, Martin Rørtoft (Second Eyes) and with support from Iaspis, Elise Jaffe + Jeffrey Brown, Botkyrkabyggen, Swedish Arts Council, Kulturbryggan and Holosonics.

Upcoming Programme in the Fittja Pavilion
2 & 4 September
Workshop (including an excursion with canoes in the lagoon, and cooking in Serra dei Giardini) with Elena Mazzi, Living Device Lab (Chiara Buffa e Giulia Marabini). Escursioni alofile is a workshop that offers an immersion in salt-tolerant landscapes brackish lagoon of Venice, the salt marshes of the north lagoon. Habitat are apparently barren, completely flat horizon, which grow on minimal height variations ranging from average sea level just 40 cm above the water surface. Through a kaiak navigation the workshop aims to trace these beautiful and fragile strips of land crossed by currents and tides, from the contributions of sand and sediments to start rediscovering them as keepers of valuable resources. We will explore the ecological complexity that characterizes them and they will investigate the potential of food through the collection of edible native plants. The tour and the collection will be documented through a video that will be screened at the Serra dei Giardini on the 4th of September and for the occasion it will be served a meal prepared with halophytes collected from the salt marshes.
40 EURO/per person. For more information contact: escursionialofile@gmail.com
In collaboration with Associazione Canoista Arcobaleno, La vivandiera video di Elena Fedeli.

3 September
Matti Bye and John Henriksson in Tona Serenad presents a concert and a film during the evening of the 3:rd September at the Fittja Pavilion. Free of charge.

The Birth of A Moving Image
During the film festival in Venice, the Fittja Pavilion is presenting Sweden’s most celebrated silent film musician, Matti Bye, and musician John Henriksson improvising to the film Birth of A Moving Image by David Giese. The film is a visual re-mix of the 1-minute film “Danse Serpentine” from the year 1900, using only material from the original 35mm reel.
In The Fittja Pavilion the visitor can also explore video works by Johanna Billing and James Webb. The concert by Matti Bye and John Henriksson in the Fittja Pavilion is part of the Song Cycles productions network, a network between small record labels and contemporary art venues created by the record label Tona Serenad and Botkyrka konsthall.

5 – 6 June, 12 – 6pm
Press & Preview of the Fittja Pavilion
Serra dei Giardini, Venice
Cini-Venier Naval Institute, Venice

5 June, 6 – 11pm
Opening party at Serra dei Giardini

6 June, 4-6 pm
Seminar ”Contemporary approaches to the late modernist architecture”, Fittja Pavilion, Serra dei Giardini, Venice.

2-3 July
Junior Residence “Dream Team” is showing the Fittja Pavilion.
5 youths from Botkyrka are making themselves heard in the public spaces of Botkyrka and out in the world.

Contact:
Anneli Bäckman
Botkyrka konsthall
+46 (0)708 136070
anneli.backman@botkyrka.se


EXHIBITION:
7 June – 7 September
Serra dei Giardini, Venice
Cini-Venier Naval Institute, Venice

ARTISTS/ARCHITECTS:
Johanna Billing (Sweden), DK-CM (UK), Derek Gripper (South Africa) + Lindy Roy (South Africa/US), Mako Ishizuka (Japan), Junior Residence (Sweden), Kultivator (Sweden) + Stu Wright (South Africa), Tor Lindstrand + students from KTH School of Architecture (Sweden), Elena Mazzi (Italy), Lorenzo Nassimbeni (South Africa), OPENrestaurant (US) + Ayhan Aydin (Sweden), Jelena Rundqvist + Aron Kullander Östlind (Sweden), Pia Sandström (Sweden), Spridd (Sweden), James Webb (South Africa), Karl-Jonas Winqvist (Sweden).

CURATOR:
Joanna Sandell

PRODUCER:
Anneli Bäckman

ASSISTENT:
Anna Jönsson

INTERN:
Maria Kotlyachkova

COLLABORATIONS:
Microclima project, Venice
Nordic Pavilion through the Swedish Centre for Architecture and Design
KTH – School of Architecture
Serra dei Giardini
Cini-Venier Naval Institute
Martin Rørtoft (curator, Second Eyes)

WITH SUPPORT FROM:
Iaspis
Elise Jaffe + Jeffrey Brown
Botkyrkabyggen
Swedish Arts Council
Kulturbryggan
Holosonics.

Photo: Toward an Institution, Tor Lindstrand

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